New Marine Sanctuary Visitors' Center to Open –
Ribbon-Cutting Features Gerry Studds For Whom Sanctuary is Named

July 19, 2001

Contact: Steve Schwadron 202-225-3111 or Anne Smrcina 781-545-8026

Washington, DC -- Gerry Studds will be the featured guest at ceremonies this weekend in Provincetown to celebrate the opening of a new interactive exhibit highlighting the national marine sanctuary on Stellwagen Bank that was renamed to honor the former local Congressman.

The new visitors center, located at the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, highlights the history and resources of the Gerry E. Studds-Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. It is intended as a convenient, land-based introduction for thousands of vistors to the remarkable marine preserve that lies three miles offshore, many aboard world-class whalewatch vessels.

Serving as master of ceremonies for the occasion will be Congressman Bill Delahunt, who succeeded Mr. Studds as the region's representative in the US House of Representatives. During his 25-year tenure, Rep. Studds was a national champion for the marine environment, and was the driving congressional force behind the creation of the sanctuary. Just before his final congressional term ended, House and Senate colleagues recognized his legislative contributions by legally ameding the name of the marine sanctuary in his honor.

This weekend's ceremonies will begin at 11am on Saturday, July 21 at the new Center for Coastal Studies headquarters, across from Provincetown Town Hall.

The Sanctuary and Center for Coastal Studies have worked together for many months to design the exhibit and its many hands-on educational features. By "diving" into the ocean, visitors can experience the wonders of the ocean without getting wet -- and enjoy aerial views of breaching humpback whales, an underwater trip through a sponge forest and descend into a school of swarming sand lance.

The new exhibit will be open daily, from 11am to 7pm, through October 8. Admission is free of charge. For further details, please call the Sanctuary headquarters in Scituate at 781-545-8026 or Delahunt's office at 800-870-2626.



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